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back to article 'Milestone' Microsoft service pack staples .NET's stomach

Microsoft's "milestone" first-service pack for Visual Studio 2008 and .NET Framework 3.5 has been released as the company shows concern over growing code bloat. SP1 certainly offers a radical diet for .NET's weight problem: it introduces the .NET Framework Client Profile for client-side applications. The Profile cuts by 85 per …

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Boffin

Like inflating tires

Out of all Microsoft's Products, the one thing that really keeps me on the platform is their development tools. I think VisualStudio is the best product MS make to be honest. IF it had been any other product team who said 'oh yeah we are going to go strip down our software and make it lean' I'd be all for it... but I don't think the .net framework is the part of Microsoft in which it needs to be made lean...

Err dude with glasses because he knows inflating your tires may help save fuel but it just doesn't quite solve the problem...

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Gates Horns

just making it worse...

Whilst they focus on doing the job for you rather than giving you the tools to do the job; bloat is unavoidable.

Spreading the bloat just adds to the problem.

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Surprisingly ...

... this Linux fanboy has to admit Mike has a point. Visual C++ 6.0 has a really solid compiler and even VB6's IDE (once you install a third-party scroll wheel fix and MZ Tools to bring it into the late 90s!) it actually very comfortable (though the language is undeniably an ugly, mutant dog of a thing).

Still - development tools clearly a strong suit at MS.

See, I don't just slag 'em off. :)

You know, from time to time I actually wish I could use VB6 at home when I want to throw together something truly temporary. I just won't shell out for an XP license (let alone a Vista license, ye gods) to do it.

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aL
Thumb Up

fyi

re: "alot of people are angry because thety have to download [to many] diffrent versions"

err.. those people are either idiots or not very familiar with .net and vs.. unless you develop for .net 1.1 (only the occational legacy app does this) there is only one, ONE version to download() in the other case, there are two.. in vs2008 you can choose what framework version you want to target, and if the app complies, it works for that version (barrnig any bugs the dev introduces ofcourse, but they would be there in any version)

fyi, the profile is just a bootstaping option.. its only there so that you dont need the full framework for quick deplyment.. if an app comes along that requires the full framework, the user is promted to download it

few people (none of the vista users) will have to download the full framework anyway.. most people use the webinstall that only downloads the new stuff, for 3.5 ~ 40 mb.. not to harsh imo..

windows has its problems, office sucks b44444411111s (seriously office is the worst ever...), but other than the size and bad naming, there is not much to bash .net for imo..

and for the last time vista is not written in .net.. infact it barely uses .net at all! calc, notepad, wmp, live messenger, aero, all win32 apps.. not .net.. they SHOULD be .net. the'd been a lot faster and better looking if they where.. aero can be recerated in like 5 minutes (including time to learn some basic hlsl) using .net 3.5 sp1..

hlsl shaders for any ui element (a new feature in wpf in .net 3.5 sp1) ftw

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re: Geoff Mackenzie

strong developer tools has always been part of the plan. get the developers on board by making their lives easier and they'll sell your stuff for you.

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Boffin

REAL Basic

@ Geoff Mackenzie

You could try REAL Basic from http://www.realsoftware.com/ it's very similar to the long gone and well loved (in some circles) VB6 and not VB.NET, plus it's available in Linux and Mac flavours as well as Windows and cross-compiles to all three target OS no matter which one you develop in.

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Development tools and Direct X

MS gets those two right.

I think they do it so that people code their games and software in using Windows only frameworks and technologies.

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Paris Hilton

Lo and behold ...

> a lot of people are angry at the fact they have to download

> different version numbers of the .NET Framework on their

> machines to build and test applications. Imagine how messy

> it could get in a world of multiple profiles, all of them running

> different version numbers.

No need to *imagine* - just try to do anything client-side involving the myriad mutually exclusive versions of the Java runtime! At least all the various .Net Frameworks co-exist on the same machine - installing a 2nd JRE nearly always breaks the first one.

Paris, because she's imagining how messy it could get ...

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Silver badge
Boffin

Cross-platform tools anyone?

If Microsoft are serious about code bloat that is a good thing, but they should also be serious about cross-platform development (not likely, but a man may dream). Our code MUST run on Windows, Linux, IRIX, and Solaris, and ran on a number of other Unix flavours in the past (OS-X is on the wish list too).

Yes, I hear a lot of praise for Visual Studio (which I wiped from my machine in anger in years past) but I got SICK of version 6 which made our applications EXTREMELY slow (I hear this got a lot better under versions 2005 and beyond), and caused problems by not accepting ANSI C++ (which still caused a problem in version 2005). Things which compile silently with g++, intel's c++ compiler and on IRIX, with all warnings on and pedantic comments on, would not compile properly under visual studio. Also, we could only use data sets HALF the size due to code bloat under Visual Studio under Windows than when we compiled using Dev-CPP (not my favourite tool either, but at least it gets the job done without having to maintain vastly different code bases).

True a number of colleagues in the Software Engineering group do use Visual Studio and they do claim their productivity increased a lot, but they simply ignore cross-platform issues (they can afford it because they do not need to run their code on high performance computing facilities).

In scientific computing we need cross-platform tools (unless our next Cray runs windows (shudder)). Cross-platform is perhaps a dirty word at MS, but the plain fact is we need it. This is also one reason for the popularity of Java in scientific computing: you can demo your stuff practicaly anywhere, it prvides a neat interface between applications running on very different systems.

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Gates Horns

Much Worse

Let's see:

DCOM -- broken, kind of

RPC -- broken, kind of

activeX -- very broken

MS virtual machine (was java until Sun sued them)-- broken, kind of

.Net -- ver. 1.0 broken

.Net -- ver 1.1 somewhat broken

.Net -- ver 2.? somewhat broken

.Net -- ver 3.0 broken, kind of

.Net -- ver 3.5 ???

Why do we put up with this?

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Bronze badge
Linux

@Geoff Mackenzie

"You know, from time to time I actually wish I could use VB6 at home when I want to throw together something truly temporary."

Tried Gambas (http://gambas.sourceforge.net/)? This seems to be the Linux equivalent of Visual Basic.

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Dead Vulture

Into the wild: Last man standing - Survival of the fittest...this seasons blockbuster!

I think the article simply highlights Microsoft's strategy for product development. It's the google approach without the hollow gesture of trying to engender warmth and fuzziness in the developer community. Go forth my apps, my platforms, my services and my toolkits! Go forth my children and conquer, cull and consume! Return to us sharp-toothed and bright-eyed, lean and supple and as ever so marketable products. Earn it my children. Earn it or die!

Contenderrrs rrready!

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silly question

"The client profile is intended to help regain some focus and bring some Windows Vista like look-and-feel and functionality to Windows XP machines. "

Why would anyone want the vista look and feel on an xp machine. People who want the vista look and feel, get vista.

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Re: RealBASIC / Gambas

I've considered both of these (I'm slightly embarassed to admit!). Gambas is clearly quite nice but not enough like VB for my VB skills to be that much use (and enough like it that I won't tolerate a learning curve - BASIC is fundamentally distasteful and I'd rather learn C# if I'm picking up something new).

RealBASIC is a commercial product - I'm still feeling my way around it a little but as soon as software costs actual money I get very reluctant to put any of my time into it. I don't like the sound of "One year of software updates" for $400 and more cash for any support thereafter. In truth the only reason I think of VB as convenient and handy is that my employer handles licensing for me (and indeed pays for it) - at home neither applies and suddenly I find myself imprisoned in closed source hell again, which serves to remind me that while some of the development tools are nice'n'shiny (sharp toothed and bright eyed?) over on the other side, life in general is far more awkward.

I was only observing that MS can put together some nice development tools - not seriously contemplating infecting my poor machines with their bloatware. :)

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The usual

'We've heard Microsoft's plan for the next big release of Visual Studio - version 10 - is for a "stripped down" suite'

The ususal MS practice

i.e. Produce crap - promise better next time.

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@aL

Does it allow you to do Area in winforms? What about Task Dialogues?

Codegear's VLC does this easily... however there arn't many 3rd party controls out there, so we';re using winforms. Making it look Vista-ish would be nice.

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What is the point of .NET?

I know it is used by many MS only shops, but other than lots of buzzwords (Managed Code etc) I've never understood the appeal, and I know that many who started by evangelising it have turned away in recent years, Java is at least crossplatform-ish (differences in threading etc), though these days it seems just as easy to use C++ with all the cross platform libs (Boost, wxWidgets etc) out there. Perhaps someone could enlighten me as to why it should be chosen except for your thrown together, bog standard, VB.NET DB apps?

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Anonymous Coward

not impressed

Is this like house/fuel prices?

Inflate to 300%, decrease to 250%, claim it's wonderful that things are going down and feel good factor is back?

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Alert

Michael Walsh

Mr. Walsh - great post. Gosh, I think I might post that on my wall.

Define 'broken.

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Flame

Microsoft and bloatware

Okay, Its nice that.NET is going on a diet. Personally I don't care for the whole .NET way of doing things, but if you're going to run the evil empire's products, you have to play with their toys.

As for things like Vista and Office 2007. I was horrified when I had to download a full gigabyte just for office 2007. there is simply no reason for that. No way on earth you can possibly justify a download of that size. It made it appear that Office 2007 was a total rewrite with those patches.

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